Brazilian Shopping Mall Market

In Brazil, the first mall was opened in 1966. In the 1970s, seven new malls were opened. The construction of large regional malls in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, among other cities, contributed to an increase in the growth of the industry in the 1980s.

The following factors contributed to a second wave of growth of the sector in the 1990s: (i) the success of several malls in the 1980s; (ii) the economic stability caused by the success of the Real Plan in Brazil; and (iii) the increase of the investment funds’ participation in the industry. However, world financial crises such as the ones that occurred in Asia, Russia and Mexico reduced the level of investment in the industry between 1994 and 2001.

  2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Number of malls in Brazil 351 363 376 392 408 430 457 495 520 538 558

 Source: ABRASCE.

The southeastern region of Brazil contains the majority of malls as it accounted for approximately 55% of Brazil’s GDP in 2013, according to the IBGE. This region has the largest population density and income per capita in the country. The states of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais account for approximately 54% of total developments in the Brazilian shopping mall industry.

Brazilian regions No. of shoppings centers (%) Total Gross leasable area (square meters) (%) Total
North 26 4.7 789,739 5.2
Northeast 85 15.2 2,605,219 17.1
Mid-West 54 9.7 1,268,422 8.3
Southeast 300 53.8 8,453,558 55.5
South 93 16.7 2,119,691 13.9
Total 558 100.0 15,236,629 100.0

Source: ABRASCE.

The state of São Paulo alone accounts for 32% of all malls in Brazil, including a number of larger regional malls. The southern region of Brazil has strong purchasing power and accounts for 17% of the total of developments in Brazil, while the northeastern region accounts for 15%.

The northern region accounts for 4,7%, the Midwestern region for 9,7%. The northeast, the lowest purchasing power in the country, concentrate efforts In the development of Shopping Centers in the community and neighborhood format and accounts for 15,2%.

In terms of its past development and potential for future development, Aliansce believes that the Brazilian shopping mall industry compares favorably to the mall industry in other countries. According to ABRASCE, Brazil has the eleventh largest shopping mall industry in the world.

Over the last five years, the mall industry has displayed a trend towards niche markets, with smaller projects in the community, neighborhoods, and country-side format. The lack of alternative financing for new projects in the capitals and large cities in the late 1990s led developers to search for smaller and lower-cost sites and construction.

This trend has created a lower demand for large-scale projects in the main cities, especially in the southern and southeastern regions. As the retail sector becomes increasingly specialized, and with the accelerated growth of the franchise industry, developers look for opportunities in new and smaller regional and community malls. According to data by ABRASCE, in 2012, Brazilian shopping malls accounted for approximately 21% of the Brazilian retail market, excluding the automotive and petroleum-derived product industries.

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